God has really been moving in your writing life. What do you see on the horizon?
God has been with me in my writing from the beginning—from the short stories I wrote as a child to the novels and stories and articles I write today. But at last I am finally writing what I want to write instead of what is popular at the moment.
My father and my maternal grandfather were ranch managers (real cowboys) and I spent part of my growing years on a sixty thousand acre cattle ranch in
South Texas. As a result, I
like to write stories with a western setting. Don’t quote me on this, but I
have a hunch the new wave in fiction will be westerns.
Tell us a little about your family.
I was born in
, home of the famous King
Ranch, and I married my college sweetheart. We have lived in many places since
we married, including Kingsville,
but now we live in South Texas again in the town of Kingsville.
They song says, Mama, don’t let you babies grow up to be cowboys. But all three of our grown sons are involved in ranching in Texas today. Five of our six grandchildren are either in 4-H or FAA and will be showing animals in the upcoming county livestock show. Only one of our grandchildren isn’t involved. She is only two. But I am sure she will be in the thick of it as soon as she is old enough.
Has your writing changed your reading habits? If so, how?
I don’t have as much time to read as I once did. My writing is taking off, and I’m writing almost constantly. All those old books I wrote so long ago are selling. Still, I have to polish my old manuscript before I send them to my publisher, and that takes time.
What are you working on right now?
I am working on a lot of projects at once. Cinderella Texas is book one in a series of western romance novels called The Cattlemen Series, and it was published as an e-book in November 2012. It will be coming out in audio and in paperback later, and I am working on book two of The Cattlemen Series now.
Bedtime Stories for Believers became an e-book in December 2012, and now I am also working on God’s Favorite Family, a series of books for young children in rhyme that I wrote when I was teaching Kindergarten in a public school. I was never able to find an artist to do the illustrations. But now I found one who happens to live only fifteen miles away. I will also have a story in a book of short stories for adults being compiled now and set in the old west. Various authors are writing the short stories for the series, and I still have to write Book Three of The Cattlemen Series.
What outside interests do you have?
If I told you, you might laugh. Besides being with my husband and family, I love to read and study Bible prophecy, and I am a fan of a TV show called “Prophecy in the News.”
I’m not laughing. I knew this about you. How do you choose your settings for each book?
I like to write about things I know. So often, when I describe a scene in one of my stories, I am describing something I actually saw with my own eyes.
If you could spend an evening with one historical person, who would it be and why?
Jesus Christ. He is the most exciting and interesting person who ever walked on this good earth. He is also God’s only begotten son. Who wouldn’t want to spent time talking to him?
What is the one thing you wish you had known before you started writing novels?
I wish I had known how important it was to polish a novel before sending it to a publisher. At one time, I sent out my first draft, and it was often sent back by return mail.
What new lessons is the Lord teaching you right now?
For years I was puffed up about my writing career, waiting for the big publishers to come knocking on my door, and that might be God’s plan for some. But it was not God’s plan for me. Now I write for a small book publisher and loving it.
What are the three best things you can tell other authors to do to be successful?
Never give up. Never give up. Never give up. If you enjoy writing, it is because God gave you the talent, ability and the desire to write. So do it. Write. And never give up.
Tell us about the featured book.
Cinderella Texas is the retelling of the classic fairy tale complete with a shoe problem for the heroine. Set on a cattle ranch in South Texas in modern times, I would call Cinderella Texas a lighthearted romance that I think will make you smile when you read it—maybe even laugh.
I can’t wait to read it. Please give us the first page of the book.
I’ll do better than that. I will give you the first part of the story. You have to meet my cowboy hero.
Chapter One Texas
“You don’t mean this is the Greene ranch.” Alyson Spencer glanced at Poncho, Quatro Greene’s hired hand, in the front seat beside her. “Do you?”
“Si, senorita.” Poncho reduced the speed of the double-cab pickup and wheeled onto the turning lane. “The ranch, he is here.” He pulled to a stop in front of an ordinary-looking metal gate.
Alyson stared at him for a moment. “But we’re out in the middle of nowhere. I haven’t seen a town or another house for miles.”
Poncho’s wide smile revealed a missing tooth in front. He opened the door on the driver’s side.
Alyson studied the Hispanic man who had picked her up at the airport in
that morning. “Let me open the gate,” she said. Corpus
“No, senorita. I will do it. You might get your clothes dirty.”
While Poncho opened the gate, Alyson thought about her new boss, Quatro Greene. She hadn’t stopped thinking about him since she read that magazine article where all the rumors about him and his family were discussed—strange, secretive, mysterious, never seen in town unless it had something to do with business, visiting a doctor or buying supplies.
A lot happened in the last three weeks. Besides being in a minor accident that required stitches, she’d accepted a job home schooling Quatro Greene’s two children. However, she hadn’t gone to
for four years
to become a home schoolteacher. North Texas
But she was desperate after realizing she wasn’t going to find a teaching position in Dallas in the middle of the school year. Besides, Tim lived in Dallas. After she saw him with that leggy blonde, she wanted to be as far from him and Dallas as possible.
Alyson and Quatro had talked on the phone several times, but this would be the first time they met face-to-face. She’d wanted to look her best. Alyson glanced down, straightening the hem of her gold top.
A sign in small black letters and written in Spanish was nailed to two cedar posts next to the gate. Una Nacion De Dios, she read. Main 20. Under it, she saw a No Trespassing sign printed in English with more Spanish words under it—possibly a “no trespassing” in that language.
She didn’t know Spanish, but maybe the number twenty meant that the Greenes owned nineteen other ranches. They were billionaires and probably lived in a mansion. So why hadn’t they invested in a more impressive entry?
Poncho got back in the truck and drove through.
As he went back to lock the gate, Alyson looked around. She hadn’t known she would be living behind a locked gate. Why wasn’t that mentioned in the teaching contract she signed?
Before she fully considered what that might mean, they wheeled down a blacktopped road that curved toward several red barns. Oil wells loomed in the distance.
“What do the Spanish words on the gate mean?” she asked.
“The Country of God.”
Alyson smiled. “God’s Country. I like that.”
An old fashioned wagon pulled by two brown horses was parked at the side of the road. A man wearing a cowboy hat appeared to be the driver.
“Who is that?” She pointed to the cowboy.
“Senor Quatro Greene.”
“You mean my new boss?” She gave a short laugh. “You’re joking.”
“I make no joke, senorita. The man, he is Senor Greene.” Poncho slowed and then stopped about ten feet from the wagon.
The cowboy waved to them. With his blue jeans tucked into his black high-topped boots and that slim body, Quatro looked too young to be a widower with two school-aged children. He climbed down from his perch, looking tall and fit as he rearranged things in the back of the wagon.
Alyson pulled her makeup mirror from her purse for a quick look at her appearance, holding the mirror at a different angle and hoping for a better result. But the cuts and bruises on her face still showed, regardless of the extra layer of makeup she’d applied after leaving the plane.
Her wounds would heal—without leaving scars, she hoped. She’d thought breaking up with Tim would leave scars. It hadn’t.
Hailey was right about Tim all along. She dabbed a bit more powder, snapped the makeup holder shut and put it back in her purse.
She glanced back at the wagon. Quatro started toward them.
He was better looking than she expected, but that was no reason to tense up. She raised her chin a notch. Okay, a lot better looking.
Quatro reached the truck in what seemed like four strides. He had high cheekbones and a dark complexion. He removed his hat and held it. Reddish-brown hair curled around the edges of his ears and at his hairline, and broad shoulders filled out his navy blue western shirt making his sapphire-colored eyes look even bluer.
A trace of boyish mischief gleamed in his smile, causing her to want to smile right back. His grin faded. One dark eyebrow arched as he appraised her face. He knew about the accident, but this was the first time he actually saw her cuts and bruises.
Quatro’s smile returned. He ducked his head, and sticking his hand through the open window, he shook her hand. “I’m Robert Greene, but my friends call me Quatro. You must be Alyson Spencer.”
“Yes, I am.”
He held her hand a moment longer than she would have expected. And she felt the warmth of his palm.
She’d learned that quatro meant four in Spanish. And he’d signed her teaching contract as Robert Lee Greene IV.
Quatro turned to Poncho. “I want you to service my truck. Have someone drive it on up to the barn for me after you put Miss Spencer’s luggage in the back of the wagon.”
Back of the wagon? Surely he hadn’t meant they would be traveling in that wagon. In these clothes?
She paid big bucks for her gold silk pantsuit because she wanted to look her best at their first meeting. She also bought cowboy boots but never intended to wear them. In hindsight, she should have bought an extra pair of jeans to go with the boots.
Quatro studied Alyson for a moment. “So if you will be so good as to climb in the wagon, we can be on our way.”
Stunned by all that she’d seen and heard, she felt her jaw drop. Pull yourself together, Alyson, she told herself. There must be an explanation.
Maybe the Greenes treated all newcomers to wagon rides. Eccentric billionaires did pretty much anything they wished, and nobody said a word. A slow smile formed on her lips. Could it be that he knew how much she loved antiques and historical novels and did all this to make me feel welcome?
I’m going to like this book. How can readers find you on the Internet?
But I haven’t update my website in ages. The best way to keep up with me is via my blogs.
Writers Rest - http://writersrest.blogspot.comI also write articles for Commandment Keepers.com and Bustles and Spurs.com, a blog for Christian readers and writers of western fiction. But you can find all my books by writing Molly Noble Bull in the search slot at Amazon and other online and walk-in bookstores.
Thank you, Molly, for sharing this book with us.
Readers, Molly is giving away a copy of Cinderella Texas and Bedtime Stories for Believers. Here are links to both of these books.
The Cattleman Series - Volume 1 - Cinderella Texas
Bedtime Stories For Believers
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